1) Its COLD. Yes - Tanzania has a winter which I was only somewhat prepared for. It also rains-though not as much as Seattle. It will be a bit colder the next month when I am higher up on Mt. Kilimanjaro-5,000 ft above sea level. I am taking classes now to prepare for my second month stationed in the town of Machame at the Machame Lutheran Hospital. I am currently taking classes in Usa river at TCDC (Training Center for Development Cooperation in Eastern and Southern Africa), which is somewhat near Arusha.
2) I should have brought a skirt. I am staying with a host family that lives in a University- Tumaini University, Makumira which has a dress code. While I am very safe behind university gates, I have to remember to wear a kanga (African wrap) or skirt everyday so I can be let through the gates. Luckily our host mom had bought my roommate and I beautiful kangas so I was set for the first week. I went to the market today and bought two skirts and another kanga (cannot resist because they are so beautiful!)
3) Bananas come with everything. ok maybe not everything but just about in every meal there is a side of banana or the bananas are mixed into the food. I like bananas so this is great! (My host family also had Nutella and peanut butter so even better!) Also- my host family feeds me a LOT, will not be losing any weight on this trip.
4) Running water exists here. To be clear- it is not everywhere and I do not really know where it comes from yet but toilets and showers are a thing. My host family is somewhat well off- what we would define as their "middle class". We have a toilet and shower that can produce hot water by using electricity to heat the water. ---> I still have to wash my clothes by hand though. I do not know what will happen next month but I am thankful for what I have now.
5) Swahili is difficult. I knew it would be difficult but it is not soaking up in my brain like Korean did. This may be due to my limited exposure to the language? Anyways it is still fun to learn!
Below are some random photos that I want to share. Pretty Flowers from Tanzania!!!! Also their avocados are huge!!
I'll post soon!